PPD, one of the Triangle's largest drug-research companies, reported that its quarterly profit more than doubled, bolstered by stronger sales to pharmaceutical customers.
The Wilmington-based business, which employs about 1,400 people in the Triangle, helps drug companies conduct clinical trials on experimental drugs and provides other services.
The strong results followed rumors earlier this month that PPD officials were considering a sale. Founder and executive chairman Fred Eshelman said at the time that PPD doesn't comment on speculation, but that management is reviewing its "long-term plan and our capital structure to see if there are any actions" that would increase shareholder value.
PPD has hired a financial advisor to help with the review, "including advising us on potential ways to unlock value for shareholders," Eshelman said on a conference call with Wall Street analysts today. The review "does not envision a combination with another CRO," he said, but declined further comment.